Friday, 31 October 2014

Essential Classic: The wrap dress

Starting on the 4 November on the E channel, is a new show called House of DVF.  Now for those of you who perhaps don't know what DVF stands for, this is Diane von Furstenberg!!!  She is an amazing women, who I love. #girlpower

A Belgium fashion designer who lives in the USA; who's renowned for making the best wrap dresses in the world!  Her new fashion reality tv programme kicks starts on the 4th November - you'll see from the video below there are a number of girls all trying to compete to get the one job! (Which really should be for me ;) )

A wrap dress is simply a dress with a front closure, that goes around the body by wrapping one side across the other and knotting the attached ties to the side of your body so that it stays firmly tied.  This will form a V-shaped neckline and generally hugs a woman's body as the material is usually jersey or silk. Probably the best body shapes for this type of dress are either Pear or Hour-glass.  And it's meant to be one of the easiest dresses for anyone to wear, regardless of height, weight or dress size.

They come in a variety of colours and patterns; making it versatile for work or for leisure.  They can be dressed up with heels or you can go for a more relaxed look at weekends with sandals.

I wore a blue patterned wrap dress to my 30th birthday party, with a fabulous brooch style necklace and knee-high black boots.

Top tips for buying a wrap dress:

  1. Make sure it fits you properly - high street wrap dresses usually are made in jersey fabric so if you don't buy it big enough then the pattern can stretch, this does not look good!
  2. Be careful about the V-neckline - for very busty women it's highly recommended to wear a modesty top underneath, there is nothing glam about letting it all be seen!
  3. If your going for a pattern, it needs to be in proportion to you! - So if your petite avoid big bold prints it will only overwhelm your appearance, and if your larger avoid teeny-tiny patterns, this will only make you look bigger.
  4. The most flattering of wrap dresses fit best when they finish either on the knee or just slightly above
  5. If you don't like that length - go for Maxi
  6. If the tie is too long/bulky - find a seamstress to make this right for you.  Highstreets tend to make them long so that they fit all sizes of women
  7. Think about the colour - try and pick a colour that's right for your skin tone and natural colourings
  8. If your spending a lot of money, especially like a DVF - opt for one that you can wear frequently like the office, so that you get value out of your investment

In celebration of Diane's new programme, I've selected a few of her wrap dresses.

These first two are ideal for the office!

New Jeanne Two 
Silk Jersey Wrap Dress
In Chain Link Medium

New Julian Two Jersey Wrap Dress

In Purple Haze

Now the next one is a little pricey - but if you were to select one in the right colours, this would be an ideal investment that you can wear on holiday, to the garden party, BBQ or out with girlfriends for lunch. It would last you years.

Heritage New Jeanne Two Long 
Maxi Silk Jersey Wrap Dress

In Twigs Large Green

Here's a preview of what's to come from early November….I'm still so excited!  For those of you who receive this by email, you'll have to click here to view the film.

Sunday, 26 October 2014

A powerful new breakfast routine!

Back in July, I dedicated the entire month to well-being - at that time I had hoped to work with  a nutritionist, but unfortunately it didn't happen.

Three weeks ago I had my first appointment; and I would like to share some of my learnings and successes with my readers, because I'm feeling so much better.  And over the next few weeks, should you decide to try some of the recipes I'm sharing, I hope you will feel the benefit too.

With this new routine, comes a new gadget, NutriBullet - which is simply fantastic!  Having never owned a blender, I really didn't know where to start!  But this little device, breaks down everything that you put into the cup, so quickly and effortlessly it's amazing.  And the best bit is that it makes your smoothie inside of the cup that you are going to drink out of!  Quick, efficient and easy to clear up - perfect for busy people!  I purchased mine from Argos for £99.99 - and I've used it about 6 times already in a week!

So for the first part of the routine, it's all about water.  I was advised that I need to drink a minimum 2 litres of water each day - a tough task when all I really drink is tea.  The new routine comes in three stages:

Step 1 - A large glass of water

This was not natural to me, but after a few days it now feels so - and I like the thought that the first thing I consume into my body is water.

Step 2 - Cup of hot water with lemon

This is really quite refreshing; you need to consume the entire amount before eating anything, so if your time poor like me, then after it's brewed for about a minute or two I then add cold water to allow me to drink it quicker.  I've been using my vintage tea cup, to make it seem a treat.  Small things like that can really help change your habits.

Step 3 - A green smoothie

The recipe below is from NutriBullet , they call it their Toxin Cleansing Blast.

So in your blender cup, you need to add:

  • 1-2 handfuls of washed spinach
  • 1 cored pear
  • 1 banana
  • 1 cored small apple
  • 1 cup of pineapple
  • And some water. 

Depending on how thick you like your smoothies you adjust the amount of water you add - I personally like mine slightly on the thicker side, even if this means having to use a spoon to consume it.

A smoothie is a meal, you will feel full as that was one of my concerns - just think how much goodness you are getting into your body in one drink, that you've made yourself so you know nothing else has been added!

I hope you have a go…


Sunday, 5 October 2014

Snug as a bug in a rug!

This Autumn/Winter we are very much seeing the blanket shrug coming into it's own.  Designs include tartan inspired, checked or striped in fact there is a lot of choice out there.

That said, you need to be sure you have the right body shape to be wearing this trend, if not, this may not flatter you!

The most idea shapes for this trend is straight, apple or inverted triangle, why?  because they have the best legs.  The blanket shrug is going to wrap around the top-half of your body and therefore if you are pear shaped or hour-glass (like me), then you will need to opt for the versions that have ties or even add a belt yourself to define the waist.

I wouldn't invest too much into this trend either, it not a classic, therefore I doubt you will be wearing it much after this season.  Go for an affordable version, ideally in one of your base colours, e.g. black, navy, brown, camel etc  so it gives you versatility across your winter wardrobe.

Here's a few to check out…

Warehouse (via House of Fraser)
Space Dye Cape Grey

Houndstooth Wrap
Also available in black

New Look have lots of different ones to choose from, here are my favourite two:

Cream Chevron Tassel Hem Blanket Wrap

Black Aztec Border Blanket Wrap


Monday, 15 September 2014

Chanel Exhibition at Saatchi Gallery

Last Sunday I headed into London to visit the Saatchi Gallery on the King's Road, as there is a Chanel exhibition on (Thank you Sadie for letting me know!).

Second Floor - The Private Apartment Of Mademoiselle Chanel is a photographic exhibition by Sam Taylor-Johnson.  Exhibiting 34 photographs capturing the private rooms of Mademoiselle Chanel at 31 Rue Cambon in Paris. 

I was excited by this, as it was only last year I visited this store in Paris when I went to see the No.5 exhibition, by Chanel.  My expectations that morning was that I was going to see 34 images of the private apartments, so I could really nosey in on her decor and private style.  It wasn't like that.  

Taylor-Johnson had photographed some rooms but had mainly concentrated on very close up imagery of personal artefacts like her crystal ball, her personalised chandelier that has her logo as well as the no. 5 incorporated into the design.  Chanel's astrology sign was Leo, and her love of lions showed; with several photos dedicated to her golden lions.

All the images were enlarged and then printed on watercolour paper producing a grainy effect -  mounted on white within large black frames; I assume to be in-keeping with the monochromatic style of Chanel.

A new fact that I discovered about Chanel; is that she didn't actually live within these private apartments, there was no bedroom or kitchen.  The Ritz was her place of residence, so I assume these apartments were used daily to meet with friends and have a quiet space near her shop.

The most exciting photos were the ones of her mirrored staircase; iconic and divine.     

Taylor-Johnson's is quoted about this unique and exciting experience on the Saatchi website:  "The essence of Chanel is firmly rooted there in all of her possessions and I truly believe that her spirit and soul still inhabits the second floor." she goes on to say "The apartment is beautifully stylish. It feels like she had meticulously chosen every object."  You can read the full article here.

It's a small exhibition, and I would really only recommend going if your close to London. The Second Floor: THE PRIVATE APARTMENT OF MADEMOISELLE CHANEL is on from 12 September - 4 October 2014 at the Saatchi Gallery, London.

All images were taken on my iPhone

Friday, 12 September 2014

You've got a front row seat at London Fashion Week!

London Fashion Week started today (Friday 12th) at Somerset House, and it's running until Tuesday 16th of September.  

Did you get that front row ticket right next to Anna Wintour? NO?  Not to worry, you've got front row tickets from the comfort of your home; simply by watching the highlights of the day online.

From today's highlights; I'm loving the skirts and dresses from J. JS Lee's SS15 collection, the quirky hemlines as pictured below look fabulous and I'm hoping they will hit the high street come springtime. The other collection I loved was Daks;  I simply adore their slimline trousers in pale tones, which would give a new edge to office wear next Spring.

Image from London Fashion Week - J. JS Lee's collection

Image from London Fashion Week - Daks SS15

I've added the schedule below for you to view; some you'll be able to view live on the site, some will be added to the Highlights page.  Either way, you CAN get involved with London Fashion Week - no ticket needed!!

Saturday 13th September
09:00 - Barbara Casasola
09:30 - 11:30 - Orla Kiely
10:00 - Jasper Conran
10:30 - 12:30 - Lulu & Co
11:00 - Emilia Wickstead
11:30 - 13:30 - Antipodium
12:00 - Julien Macdonald
12:30 - 14:30 - Markus Lupfer
13:00 - Sibling
13:30 - 15:30 - Danielle Romeril
14:00 - Hunter Original
15:00 - Holly Fulton
16:00 - J.W.Anderson
16:30 - 1205
17:00 - 18:00 - Joseph
17:30 - Nasir Mazhar
18:00 - 20:00 - Whistles
18:30 - House of Holland
19:30 - Lucas Nascimento
20:30 - Marchesa
21:00 - KTZ

Sunday 14th September
09:00 - Preen by Thornton Bregazzi
09:30 - 17:30 - Mulberry
10:00 - Margaret Howell
10:30 - 12:30 - Sophia Webster
11:00 - Richard Nicoll
12:00 - Marios Schwab
12:30 - 14:30 - palmer//harding (Women's)
13:00 - Matthew Williamson
14:00 - Temperley London
14:30 - 16:30 - Toga
15:00 - Topshop Unique
15:15 - Ashley Williams
16:00 - Paul Smith
17:00 - Vivienne Westwood Red Label
18:00 - Mary Katrantzou
18:30 - 20:30 - Belstaff
19:00 - David Koma
20:00 - Jonathan Saunders
20:30 - Pringle of Scotland

Monday 15th September
09:00 - Antonio Berardi
09:30 - 17:30 - Mulberry
09:30 - 10:45 - Mother of Pearl
10:00 - Roksanda
11:00 - Erdem
12:00 - Michael van der Ham
13:00 - Burberry Prorsum
14:00 - Issa
15:00 - Christopher Kane
15:30 - 17:30 - Huishan Zhang
16:00 - Thomas Tait
17:00 - Peter Pilotto
18:00 - GILES
19:00 - TOM FORD

Tuesday 16th September
09:00 - OSMAN
10:00 - Anya Hindmarch
11:00 - Simone Rocha
12:00 - Marques'Almeida
12:30 - 14:30 - Ryan Lo
13:00 - Fashion East
13:30 - 15:30 - Tata Naka
14:00 - Emilio de la Morena
15:00 - Ashish
16:00 - Meadham Kirchhoff
16:30 - 18:30 - Isa Arfen

17:00 - H by Hakaan Yildirim

Sunday, 7 September 2014

SS15 - New York Fashion Week - Victoria Beckham

With my recent post about floral being on trend for Autumn/Winter this year - it looks like floral will still make an impact next Spring/Summer too.

Victoria Beckham's fashion show for SS15 collection was in New York today, and you'll see from all the fabulous designs below, floral is definitely the way to go!

I'm loving this look, as she has kept it simple yet affective.  Victoria quotes for Grazia Daily ‘For me I wanted a collection that was minimal and graphic but I also wanted to have fun – that’s me, it feels very me. I take what I do very, very seriously but I also want to have fun. I think it's really cool.’ 

This is also her debut show for her own shoe collection too.   Daily May Sitch who writes for says "In her show notes, the British designer announced that she had designed the shoes for the collection herself (formerly the task of Manolo Blahnik) in her London atelier, and the results were seriously impressive."

All images are from Victoria Beckham's Facebook page, click here to follow her.